The Reference Department of the Massillon Public Library was the recent recipient of a generous gift from the Friends of Massillon Public Library. The organization gave $6500 to purchase a new digital microfilm reader and scanner. The new machine replaced one that is over twenty years old and for which parts are no longer available.
The library now has three microfilm readers that are in constant use by genealogists, historians and even football boosters looking at old game scores. The two digital machines can print from the newspaper article and also scan the image so that it can be sent as an email attachment, a service provided for a small fee for researchers from around the country.
Recently, a scanned obituary was emailed to a veteran's affairs staff member in California who was using it to support a claim of post-traumatic-stress syndrome for a Vietnam War veteran. His client's time in the war was traumatic, but what really devastated him was the death in a car accident of his war buddy from Massillon, because he was the driver and survived. Because of the new digital scanner, a library staff member was able to email the article within hours.
The library has microfilm of the Massillon Independent dating back to 1863. Copies are $.15 per page and library staff is available to assist you during all library hours. For more information, contact Jessica Watkins, Head of Reference, at 330-832-9831 ext. 307.
The Massillon Public Library is located at 208 Lincoln Way East in Massillon.